Investment management ousts payments as fintech's hottest area

Investment management ousts payments as fintech's hottest area

Move over payments, London's hottest fintech scene is now investment management, according to a report from PwC and Startupbootcamp which claims a host of upstarts are transforming the way money is managed.

While startups focussed on disrupting payments have hogged the fintech limelight over the last few years, by last year innovation in the areas had already reached a certain level of maturity, says the report.

One reason for this is that young firms in payments hit a barrier when they reach a certain point because a viable business requires a very large volume of transactions, and both payers and payees are drawn to those that have the biggest scale and reach.

In contrast, 2015 was the year that saw an explosion in fintech interest in asset and wealth management. Over half of the final cohort in Startupbootcamp’s London accelerator programme were focused on asset and wealth management and a slew of companies working on B2C, B2B, robo-advisery, big data, machine learning, equity research and automated portfolio selection are emerging.

PwC expects investment management to continue to be a hot area in 2016 and also predicts that this year could finally see the blockchain live up to its hype as companies engage in test scenarios, pilot programmes and partnerships.

Steve Davies, UK and Emea fintech leader, PwC, says: "The heart of the fintech problem often lies in the inherent culture of ‘slow and steady’ found in large financial corporations and success will come from incumbents and startups working together. Companies should focus on what they do best and then work with relevant fintechs for innovation to support their strategy."

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